The season is winding down for the Okanagan College Coyotes basketball teams. The men’s and women’s teams have just two weeks of the season remaining, four games total, to utilize in their playoff pushes. The Coyotes are coming off tough losses to the Langara College Falcons over the weekend. The two Coyotes teams had chances to grab the wins, but weren’t able to best the Falcons.
The women dropped the first game on Friday to the Falcons 68-66 in a heartbreaking loss. Coyotes’ Elizabeth Henne had her best game of the season with 20 points and 11 rebounds, but the team fell short. Langara came out with force Saturday afternoon with a commanding 78-51 victory.
It was back and forth for the men’s team against Langara throughout the weekend. The lead switched between the Coyotes and the Falcons throughout the first game, but the Falcons took control in the final minutes by out rebounding and shooting the Coyotes. In a 96-88 point loss, the Coyotes’ defence broke apart at the end.
In another high scoring game Saturday, the Coyotes held the lead most of the game, but came apart again in the fourth quarter dropping game two 102-96. Though the offence was thriving, Coyotes head coach Dino Gini said they needed to be better on defence.
“Our defensive rotation really cost us. The lack of focus after halftimes is something we talk about every game. We need to mentally stronger and we need to grind it out and play better defensively,” said coach Gini. “There were a lot of positives (during the weekend), but we need to learn to close the game and take care of the ball in crucial moments. We need to make adjustments on the defensive end and we cannot send them to the (free-throw) line 40 times; it’s frustrating.”
Coyotes’ Davide Ciancio notched 36 points in the two games, while centre Christian Williams played well on both sides of the ball with 34 points and 19 rebounds in the weekend games.
The Coyotes play their last home set of home games this weekend against Camosun College. Camosun is right in the middle of the pack in the standings with the Coyotes, so Okanagan College will need to round out their defensive efforts to ensure some wins.
Both Coyotes’ teams sit sixth out of seven in the league standings, which is good for qualifying for the playoffs, but will have a tough first round match-up if they don’t improve their standing with wins in the next two weeks.
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